For someone moving internationally, you must be wondering what moving tips are the best to get you started. There may be a lot on your mind, but it’s essential to plan this trip in advance and do the necessary research, so you don’t miss any vital points. Here are some tips for moving abroad.
People often have valid reasons to move abroad, even if they’re simply based on experiencing something other than life in their hometown. But, to move to another country doesn’t just require packing your bags and heading for the nearest airport – there’s research to do to help you fit in at the destination and prevent you from making some huge mistakes.
The Essential Moving Tips for International Travelers Are Mainly Based on Research
The research you must do before relocating will mainly depend on your destination. If it’s a country far away from yours, there may be more questions besides how long before a move should I start packing. Some countries have certain etiquettes regarding shipped items, not just how people behave.
So, if you want to learn how to move abroad, make sure you don’t miss any gaps and loopholes. For example, suppose you plan to move with dogs. The first order of business should be to check if your dog can sustain a long trip, if they require vaccinations or a passport, and if the landlord allows pets.
There’s research to be done if you’re relocating for a job. Getting invited to work overseas won’t be enough for the customs officers, but it will make things easier when applying for a visa. Changing your life as they do in romantic comedies won’t be that simple, mainly because bureaucracy falls under the most critical pieces of the relocation puzzle.
Packing Your Home Will Take the Most Time, but You Can’t Bring Everything
When traveling abroad, the essential packing and moving tips will most likely just be advice on what to pack when going abroad. Some countries have seemingly bizarre bans on importing and shipping certain items, but knowing about them should be part of your initial research and preparations.
Besides the usual bans on flammable, hazardous, and illegal items, the following countries have banned the import of some unlikely stuff:
- Canada – baby walkers. During the 90s, these baby helpers caused too many injuries, which prompted the government to ban their use entirely,
- Morocco – cash. That is, $100 worth of Moroccan money, the dirham; carrying Moroccan money into Morocco will be considered illegal since it’s a closed currency, meaning it’s only traded and exchanged within the country,
- Singapore – chewing gum. Sure, you may have small quantities of gum on you, and it might be OK with some customs officers, but it’s mostly banned. You can get fined up to $1,000 if you spit gum on the street, too,
- Tunisia – pencils. Your kids will have to use pens to do their homework since they are, for some reason, banned in Tunisia,
- Algeria – toothpaste. OK, people in Algeria brush their teeth, but not with imported fluoride-filled toothpaste. They consider fluoride poisonous there,
- Uruguay – eyeglasses. You can buy prescription eyeglasses there, but they’ve limited importing foreign spectacles to boost the local optician economy.
Before You Pack for Your Next Destination, Check How Much Money You’ll Need
Living in Europe as an American may cause you to feel shellshocked by the differences between many things, and currencies are no exception. European countries that are part of the EU primarily use one currency, the Euro (€), but it’s not all of them.
The EU countries that don’t use the Euro are Bulgaria, Sweden, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Poland, Hungary, and Romania. Researching the conversion rate with the local currency will help you determine their price differences from the US and learn if life there is more or less expensive than expected.
If you follow just one relocation hack from this article, it should be researching your destination’s costs, standards, and currency. Don’t assume that every country will accept the Dollar without reservations and especially that they’ll take your unexchanged money wherever you find yourself.
You can always look into the costs of living on Numbeo, a website dedicated to comparing living standards in every country.
Make Things Smoother and Easier by Applying for the Necessary Documentation Beforehand
Having all the required documents for traveling abroad is the answer to how can I make moving easier. The correct papers aren’t just going to get you across the border and integrated into a new society but also help you move efficiently and without worries.
If you didn’t know by now, foreign countries require paperwork with seals of approval for your operations. If you intend to stay for good, you have to go through visa processes every year or two. Typically, after five years of residing somewhere, you’re allowed to apply for a permanent residence visa.
Particular circumstances that can grant you a permanent residence visa or even full-blown citizenship include being married to a native and/or having a child born in the country. Otherwise, after about seven to ten years, you can apply for citizenship if you fluently speak the language and have most of your capital in the country.
Most people move abroad for work, which is, besides education, the most suitable way to move. You’ll secure the proper paperwork and be covered by your employer throughout. With visas, you will need to sit through a potentially stressful process, but will be welcomed if you have adequate paperwork.
The girl in the video below talks about applying for a European Schengen visa from the US and the crucial steps. You’ll figure out what’s necessary and what’s just extra papers in your folder.
You (Most Likely) Don’t Have a Ship, so Move Boxes and Get Packing Service From an International Moving Company
When you ask what is the best method for moving, a resounding answer will likely be to book international relocation services. If there’s something that should be on your checklist for relocating overseas, it’s finding the most suitable movers to help you pack and move to your new home without any issues.
You’re probably not that aware of all the things that go into overseas shipping. Even if you have the best intentions, they won’t reduce the relocation stress of taking care of the logistics. If you don’t have to move a single box from your home but leave it all to movers and their packing service, that’d be ideal.
This will give you time to prepare for relocation day in another way, by either taking care of the paperwork you need or handling the closing costs and details in your new place.
Moving Companies Have Their Equipment, so You Don’t Have to Worry About Boxes
Movers know what should be moved first when moving and how to pack those items. In fact, if you hire professional relocation services, they can bring their equipment, like boxes and packaging paper, and thoroughly pack your home. This is beneficial if you’re relocating overseas alone because you may not know about every packaging hack or how to protect your belongings during shipping.
You won’t have to worry about relocation insurance, either, as the right movers will have it included in their standard relocation package. You can also pack some boxes if you want – it’s recommended that you handle valuable items personally.
Besides Packing, Relocation Companies Offer Storage and Car Shipping
You won’t even have to worry about shipping your car overseas if you hire a company because they’ll offer this service, too. Since driving is a viable option when you move abroad, it’ll be tough to do it without a car. That’s why getting car shipping services will turn your life around.
And if you pack too much and realize you don’t need it all at your new place (because homes are much smaller in other countries compared to the US,) you can get storage. Storage services are a beneficial plan B that’ll give you time to figure out what to do with the rest of your stuff.
See What You’ll Need to Fit In With the Locals More Easily
Adjusting to a new country can be difficult when you experience culture shock. Countries that are polar opposites of the US can cause stress, especially if you’ve moved for the first time. One of the best tips for moving to those very different countries is finding expat communities.
These communities can speed up your adaptation, show you how to act like a local, and teach you important stuff about paperwork, healthcare, and other things required daily. The good news is that you don’t have to arrive at your destination to meet a group of expats. They can be present online and share advice via Facebook, Reddit, or other social media pages.
It’s essential to filter out right advice from the wrong because there can definitely be some off-beat suggestions. You must remember that everyone handles change and adaptation differently, and everyone deals with other humans in their own way.
If someone seems a bit cynical and pessimistic about the country you want to go to, you should take note of what bothers them. If it’s the small stuff that doesn’t affect daily living and interactions but rather something that happened once or twice, it’s likely just a personal frustration.
However, if more people say the same thing about a place, and not a good thing, listening to this advice might be a good idea. Research is necessary for context, but be careful that it doesn’t affect your understanding of the people or country.
An Important Part for Your Checklist – Learning How to Use the Local Language
One of the common relocation mistakes folks make is thinking that every country speaks English. Sure, it’s been deemed the universal language, and there are lots of really great non-native English speakers, but living among the locals of Cambodia, Lithuania, France, or Japan won’t get you far with only English in your skillset.
Breaking the language barrier is vital when you live overseas; that shows the locals you’re willing to adapt and respect their culture. Fitting in with native residents will bring you many benefits later on. You can break some stereotypes and show effort at the same time. So, choose a country with a language that’s easy to understand and learn.
Wrap Up Your Move by Double-Checking if You Have Everything
Now that you have some crucial moving tips and tricks for a trip abroad, you can relocate across the world safely and fully prepared. If you’ve not lived on your own so far, doing so in a foreign country will be a completely different challenge. However, it’s a challenge worth accepting, by many accounts.
More than anything, double-check if you have everything. That means, before you start the process of relocating, you should create a checklist you can follow closely until relocation day. The more detailed it is, the easier it will be to move and start a new life in a faraway place.